Tuesday, December 19, 2006


Article in this a.m.'s N&O discusses the incredible power that has accrued to Jim Black as speaker of the NC House (8-year tenure) and to Marc Basnight, president pro tem of the NC Senate (14-year tenure). Nothing has gotten done without these two gentlemen saying okay. Basnight shows every intention of going on for another 14 years, while Black has taken a header onto the ice and will be replaced.

At least one candidate for the job is urging the House to change the rules to impose term limits on speakers of the House. Fine, say some, but term limits have to apply to the president pro tem of the Senate too, or we will be handicapping ourselves in the give and take.

We agree with that. Much as we'd like to see the grandees of House & Senate brought down to mere mortal dimensions, it would be patently unfair for the House to impose term limits on its speaker while the Senate consolidates its power. Bad idea.

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